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Submission + - Is it time for Slashdotters to get involved?

hdryder writes: I dont know about the rest of you fellow US citizens, but I think it is time for us nerds to make ourselves heard in the halls of Congress – especially about this Government shutdown. When our elected officials are reading Dr. Seuss rather than dealing with the urgent needs of our country, — well I for one think we can only improve things by getting involved. I just spent the last hour writing my Congress members. So I ask Slashdotters – is it time you do the same?

Submission + - Perpetual Motion Test Could Amend Theory of Time

tocs writes: Nobel Prize-winning physicist Frank Wilczek wants to a build a perpetual motion machine . The concept uses Time Crystals, the idea that crystals can be extended into the fourth dimension, built of calcium ions to demonstrate the concept. If successful it might not lead to boundless energy but we could end up with machines that outlive the universe.

Submission + - NASA lets us watch the Sun spin for 3 years in 4 minute video ( 1

An anonymous reader writes: Back in February 2010 NASA launched the Solar Dynamics Observatory–a 3-axis stabilized satellite and fully redundant spacecraft. The aim of the SDO is to monitor solar activity and see how that impacts space weather.

As part of its observations, the SDO captures an image of the Sun every 12 seconds using the onboard Atmospheric Imaging Assembly, but varies those shots across 10 different wavelengths. NASA has now collected 3 year’s worth of image data from the SDO and has put together a video letting us see the Sun spin in all its glory.

Submission + - BOOM: Team Fortress 2, Oculus Rift, and Omnidirectional Treadmill Equal Big Fun (

MojoKid writes: The concept of gaming accessories may have just been taken to a whole new level. A company called Virtuix is developing the Omni, which is essentially a multidirectional treadmill that its creators call “a natural motion interface for virtual reality applications.” The company posted a video showing someone playing Team Fortress 2 and using the Omni along with the Oculus Rift virtual reality headset. You can see in the video how much running and movement this fellow performs. With something like the Omni in your living room, you'd likely get into pretty good shape in no time. Instead of Doritos and Mountain Dew, folks might have to start slamming back Power Bars and Gatorade for all night gaming sessions.

Submission + - NASA Trailer To Be Shown Before Star Trek: Into Darkness (

Soulskill writes: Tired of seeing ads for cars and soda before the films you watch at the theater? Well, a successful crowdfunding campaign at IndieGogo will see a trimmed down version of NASA's 'We Are Explorers' video aired before showings of the upcoming Star Trek: Into Darkness in theaters all over the country. "Most people recognize space as a key expression of our character. They know our space programs as a globally recognized brand of ingenuity. The recently landed Mars Curiosity Rover was the latest reminder that space systems are the crown jewels of our scientific and technical prowess. Less known is the indispensable value space systems bring to our everyday lives. Space provides irreplaceable capabilities for defense, public health, finance, medicine, energy, agriculture, transportation, development and countless other fields. Investments in space programs are precisely about improving and protecting life on Earth. ... By funding this campaign, we can remind students and the general public that our nation's space agency is working hard on the next era of exploration." The campaign's funding goal was reached in just six days — their stretch goal will increase the number of theaters for the clip from 59 screens to 750. The movie comes out on May 17th.

Submission + - Texas judge tosses out patent claim against Linux (

netbuzz writes: "A federal judge in Texas, presiding over a district notorious for favoring patent trolls, has summarily dismissed all claims relating to a case brought by Uniloc USA against Rackspace for allegedly infringing upon Linux patents. Red Hat defended Rackspace in the matter and issued a press release saying: “In dismissing the case, Chief Judge Leonard Davis found that Uniloc’s claim was unpatentable under Supreme Court case law that prohibits the patenting of mathematical algorithms. This is the first reported instance in which the Eastern District of Texas has granted an early motion to dismiss finding a patent invalid because it claimed unpatentable subject matter.”"

Submission + - A German Parking Garage Parks Your Car for You (

moon_unit2 writes: Tech Review has a story about a garage in Ingolstadt, Germany, where the cars park themselves. The garage is an experiment set up by Audi to explore ways that autonomous technology might practically be introduced; most of the sensor technology is built into the garage and relayed to the cars rather than inside the cars themselves. It seems that carmakers see the technology progressing in a slightly different way to Google, with its fleet of self-driving Prius. From the piece: “It’s actually going to take a while before you get a really, fully autonomous car,” says Annie Lien, a senior engineer at the Electronics Research Lab, a shared facility for Audi, Volkswagen, and other Volkswagen Group brands in Belmont, California, near Silicon Valley. “People are surprised when I tell them that you’re not going to get a car that drives you from A to B, or door to door, in the next 10 years.”

Submission + - GTK+ 3.8 Released with support for Wayland (

kthreadd writes: Version 3.8 of the GTK+ GUI framework has been released in version 3.8. A new feature in GTK+ 3.8 is support for Wayland 1.0, the display server that will replace X on free desktops. Among the other new featurs are improved support for themeing, fixes to the geometry management and improved accessibility. There is also better support for touch, as part of a long going effort in making GTK+ touch-aware.

Submission + - New Brain Implant Transmits Wirelessly to Computer (

kkleiner writes: "Scientists at Brown University have made a brain implant that can record and transmit brain signals to a computer wirelessly. Free from onerous connections and wires, the technology could foster the development of a new generation of more flexible robotics to help amputees, spinal cord injury victims, or people with crippling neurological disorders. Referred to the researchers affectionately as the “can,” the titanium-enclosed device measures 2.2 inches (56 mm) long, 1.65 inches (42 mm) wide, and 0.35 inches (9 mm) thick. That’s pretty small considering it contains an array of 100 electrodes, a lithium ion battery, and custom-designed ultralow-power integrated circuits, radio and infrared wireless transmitters, and a copper coil for recharging."

Submission + - Ask Slashdot: Are We in a Tech Bubble? (

Nerval's Lobster writes: "When a major IT company pays a reported $30 million—roughly 90 percent of it in cash—for an iOS app with no monetization strategy and a million downloads since launch, is that a sign that the tech industry as a whole is riding a massive, overinflated bubble? That’s the amount of filthy lucre that Yahoo paid for 17-year-old Nick D’Aloisio’s Summly app, according to AllThingsD. The app offers “algorithmically generated summaries” (in its Website’s words) from hundreds of news sources across the Web, presented in an easy-to-read format; users can cherry-pick their topics and news sources of choice, save summaries for offline viewing, and share content with others. Yahoo isn't alone, by a long shot: over the past couple years, a few apps have been snatched up for enormous sums—think Facebook’s $1 billion acquisition of Instagram in 2012, or Google buying Sparrow for a reported $25 million. Nor has the money train stopped there: in a pattern that recalls the late-90s market frothiness for anyone over the age of 28, a handful of tech companies have either launched much-hyped IPOs or witnessed their share price skyrocket into the stratosphere. But does all this IPO activity and app-acquiring actually mean "bubble"?"

Submission + - NVIDIA Launches Sub-$200 Graphics That Can Play Any DX11 Title, Even Crysis 3 (

MojoKid writes: "To counter the just-announced AMD Radeon HD 7790, NVIDIA is launching a new mainstream graphics card of its own, which is somewhat of a cross between the GeForce GTX 650 Ti and GeForce GTX 660. The new GeForce GTX 650 Ti BOOST reference specifications call for a base GPU clock of 980MHz with a boost clock of 1033MHz and a memory clock of 1502MHz (6008MHz effective). At those frequencies, the GeForce GTX 650 Ti BOOST will offer up to 144.2GB/s of memory bandwidth and 62.7GTexes/s of textured fillrate. Performance-wise, the new card offers playable frame rates in virtually any leading-edge DX11 title on the market currently, for well under $200. NVIDIA is also doing some rejiggering of its price structure, which makes the company’s entire mid-range lineup more affordable."

Submission + - NASA To Launch 13,000 sqft Solar Sail In 2014 (

kkleiner writes: "In 2014, NASA hopes to launch a 13,000 square foot solar sail — the third to ever hit space and by far the biggest yet. The sci-fi inspired mission, Sunjammer, is named after Arthur C. Clarke’s 1964 tale of sun-yacht races through the solar system and will carry the ashes of Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry and his wife Majel Barrett Roddenberry to the mission’s destination, a gravitationally balanced orbit between the Earth and Sun (L1). Sunjammer’s sail is a third of an acre, about 124 feet to a side, and seven times the size of the Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) and Planetary Society’s solar sail IKAROS, the biggest sail successfully launched to date."

Submission + - Will Google Drive Make A Real Impact? (

lance28 writes: "Google Drive is Google’s file sync and storage service. Before the official launch, there were a lot of rumors and speculations about the service. To start with Google Drive gives its users 5 GB of cloud storage free of cost, through a paid monthly subscription plan, the storage space can be upgraded up to 16 TB. Google drive is technically an extension of Google Docs which allows users to store any type of file."

Submission + - Apache CloudStack becomes a top-level project (

ke4qqq writes: "The Apache Software Foundation (ASF), the all-volunteer developers, stewards, and incubators of nearly 150 Open Source projects and initiatives, today announced that Apache CloudStack has graduated from the Apache Incubator to become a Top-Level Project (TLP), signifying that the Project's community and products have been well-governed under the ASF's meritocratic process and principles."

Submission + - Gandalf/Magneto To Officiate At Picard/Professor X Wedding (

Freshly Exhumed writes: On the Jonathan Ross Show, Sir Ian McKellen, best known to SciFi fans as Magneto and/or Gandalf, revealed that he will be officiating at the wedding of his long time friend and fellow actor, Patrick Stewart, who will soon be marrying his jazz-singer fiance Sunny Ozell. Quipped McKellen: 'I’m going to marry Patrick...' 'How else do you put that? I’m going to officiate at his wedding.'

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